Prostate cancer is a disease in which there is an abnormal growth of cells in the prostate gland. Scientists have not yet uncovered what causes prostate cancer, but the likelihood of developing it increases with age, and the disease is more common in men with a family history of prostate cancer and African-American men.
Each year, approximately 218,000 American men are diagnosed with prostate cancer, the majority of whom are 65 years of age or older. Other than skin cancer, it is the most common malignancy diagnosed in American men and the second leading cause of death from cancer.
The prostate is located just below the bladder and in front of the rectum. It surrounds the urethra, the narrow tube that runs the length of the penis and carries both urine and semen out of the body. The sides of the prostate are covered by nerves, which control erectile function.
Approximately the size of a walnut, the prostate is a gland in the male reproductive system. Its primary known function is to produce a fluid that makes up part of the semen.
There are a variety of treatment options for prostate cancer, including conservative management, radiation therapy, hormone therapy, cryosurgery and prostatectomy. most appropriate vary from patient to patient. The physician will evaluate stage of cancer, Gleason score, the patient's age and overall health before recommending any treatment option.
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